The Afronauts

13 July - 2 August 2013

In 1964, after gaining independence, Zambia started a space programme led by Edward Makuka Nkoloso, sole member of the unheard of National Academy of Science, Space Research and Philosophy. The programme, whose aim was to send the first African astronauts to Mars, was soon cancelled, becoming no more than an amusing anecdote in the country’s history. In ‘The Afronauts’ De Middel creates a subjective version of the story engaging with myths and truths. The now sold­out book is comprised of a series of constructed colour photographs, sequenced alongside drawings and reproductions of letters, resulting in a fictional portrait of a national dream.